Purpose. To evaluate the activity and safety of ecteinascidin (ET-743) in pretreated patients with advanced or metastatic soft tissue and bone sarcoma. Patients or subjects. Eighty-nine patients received ET-743 as a 24-hour continuous infusion at a dose of 900-1500 mug/m(2) every 3 weeks. Results. We observed one complete remission, 5 partial remissions, one minimal response, and 16 patients with a disease stabilization of 6 months or more. The objective response rate was 6.7% and the clinical benefit rate at 3 and 6 months was 37.7% and 23.4%, respectively. Responses were noted in patients with lipo-, leiomyo-, osteo-, and myogenic sarcoma, with a median duration of 9.85 months. Toxicity mainly involved an asymptomatic elevation of transaminases and neutropenia. Estimated 1- and 2-year survival rates were 39.4% and 15.8%. Median overall survival was 8.25 months. Discussion. This retrospective analysis confirms that ET-743 induces objective responses and progression arrest in a clinically relevant proportion of patients.